Web Video / Yacht Rock
Yacht Rock is an 12-part series following the fictionalized lives and careers of American soft rock stars of the late 1970s and early 1980s. Created by JD Ryznar, Hunter D Stair and Lane Farnham, it is one of the most successful projects to come out of Channel101
J. D. Ryznar and Hunter D. Stair devised the series after noticing the incestuous recording careers of such bands as Steely Dan, Toto, and The Doobie Brothers and the singer-songwriters Kenny Loggins and Michael McDonald. For example, McDonald co-wrote Loggins' "This Is It" and Loggins co-wrote McDonald's band The Doobie Brothers'
"What a Fool Believes" and also performed backing vocals for several other 'yacht rock' artists, including Steely Dan
and Christopher Cross. Yacht Rock's episodes were "hosted" by "Hollywood" Steve Huey
, a legitimate music critic for Allmusic. It should be noted that the term "Yacht Rock" is never used throughout the series by any characters except for by Huey during his introductions, instead it is always referred to as "Smooth Music". The look of the series was the responsibility of the show's editor Lane Farnham.
The storyline of the series employs a non-linear chronology,
jumping back and forth in various points in time. Also, Space.
- Affectionate Parody
- Big Bad: Gene Balboa runs his entertainment business like a Bond villain.
- Beethoven Was an Alien Spy: Several (real life) characters are revealed to be aliens.
- Downer Ending: Episode 2
- Easy Amnesia: McDonald after he gets run over by Warren G.
- Insistent Terminology: Only Hollywood Steve refers to it as "Yacht Rock" in his introductions. Everyone else calls it "Smooth Music"
- Jerkass: John Oates is depicted as an abusive foulmouthed control freak.
- Jerk Jock: Don Henley and Glenn Frey of the Eagles are depicted as this.
- Historical In-Joke:
- The doo-wop section of Van Halen's song I'm the One is the result of an in-studio scuffle between Koko Goldstein and Ted Templeman.
- Human Nature got recorded thanks to Koko's spirit harpooning Michael Jackson's crotch.
- I Keep Forgettin' (Every Time You're Near) got sampled in Regulate because Nate Dogg and Warren G ran over McDonald.
- Glenn Frey and Don Henley sang background vocals for Steely Dan's song FM because they beat the crap out of them after being bullied the whole episode by them.
- The title of "Yah Mo B There" came from a drunk Michael McDonald and James Ingram making fun of Kenny Loggins saying over the phone that he would be by to record some music with them later (with a mouthful of apple so it came out as "Yah Mo Be There")...they kept it up the whole time.
James Ingram: "Yah mo
kay to drive...." *falls over* Michael McDonald: "Yah m'
- Human Aliens: Giorgio Moroder, who hails from Planet Synthos.
- Hostile Show Takeover: Happens twice in the series, with Hollywood Steve's dad in episode 6 and Drew Carey in episode 9.
- Storybook Episode: Episode 6 uses the plot of episode 1 to tell a fairytale version of both the historical and modern Jethro Tull.
- Shout-Out: The battle between Moroder and Loggins with Hall and Oats resemble the Death Star approach from Star Wars. It even has a Big Damn Heroes moment by the Millennium Falcon!
- Off-the-Shelf FX: In Episode 10, Jimmy Buffet's cassette player is an Atari 1010 Program Recorder◊.
- Take That: Most of the parody is affectionate, but the invectives against Jimmy Buffett are particularly strong.
James Ingram: "Yah mo
murdered a lot of people out here tonight." Michael McDonald:
"They're not people, James Ingram. They're Jimmy Buffet fans." Jimmy Buffet:
"...with a cheeseburger in paradise..." Gene Balboa:
"Fuck you, Jimmy Buffet!" Kevin Bacon:
"Your music is shit!"
- The Power of Rock : All over the place, especially the laser Loggins shoots from his crotch to defeat the Parrotheads.
- Record Producer: Koko Goldstein and Ted Templeman.
- The Reveal: Papa Moroder is Koko, and his body was only a vessel.
- Running Gag:
- Those Two Bad Guys: Hall and Oates.
- The Unintelligible: Donald Fagen.
- The Un-Reveal: Koko Goldstein's killer, as Hollywood Steve died while narrating it.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Michael McDonald and Kenny Loggins